National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster told Turkey the United States will no longer arm Kurdish YPG militia fighters in Syria, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan claimed Saturday. “It was emphasized that Turkey’s legitimate security concerns must be paid attention to,” said a statement from Erdogan. “It was agreed that close coordination would be carried out in order to avoid misunderstandings.”
Erdogan’s government considers the YPG terrorists because of their links to Kurdish separatists in Turkey, but the U.S. has long considered the Kurds valuable local allies in the war on terror. This has led to tension between Ankara and Washington, which are allied as two NATO member states.
President Trump previously promised to stop arming the Kurds in Syria in November, but he did not say when the change would occur.